Thursday, July 01, 2010

Park Yong Ha

I guess everyone is stunned about his suicide. When I was first texted about this news yesterday morning, I went "Huh? Really? Park Yong Ha?" It was totally unbelievable because he had just released a Japanese album and was holding concerts to promote the album. He was also going to start on a new drama with Yoon Eun Hye soon.

I read reports that he was suffering from depression due to work and family. How alone he must have felt when he decided to end his life that night. I guess he thought he had no friends to count on and yet, looking at all the celebrities who came and pay their respects at his wake the last 2 days, he was far from being a loner. Friends who came varied from actors to singers, from the young to the older ones. It was indeed a wide spectrum. At some point in his life, he must have touched their lives and made some impact. If only he could see it then before he ended his life on impulse.

Like many, I became aware of Park Yong Ha from the drama that started it all for me- 'Winter Sonata'. I fell for Bae Yong Joon and couldn't stand Park Yong Ha in the show. I found him too wishy-washy. Perhaps he had acted too well?

Didn't impressed me with 'Loving You' with Eugene either. Although apparently, they worked so well together that they became an item for a short while.

This was the mv Tidings, that they did together.

And then he disappeared...well not actually disappeared.

A mysterious singer, by the name 'Who' was going to sing the theme song for 'All In'. The drama starring Lee Byung Hun and Song Hye Gyo. The voice sounded familiar and strange at the same time and the industry and internet was all abuzz. We soon found out that 'Who' was Park Yong Ha and it would be the start of his singing career. It certainly created lots of interest, especially as 'Winter Sonata' was just gaining momentum overseas, launching the Hallyu wave.

All In theme song- Just like the first day.

And so, in 2003, Zhao Bao invited him over for its inaugural Z Pop concert. Was he the first Hallyu star to step upon our little red dot? I'm not sure but I think so. I actually posted the above picturein September, 2008 posting as I had come across the magazine whilst clearing out my cupboard. I was remarking how pink he looked. I believe he went to Bishan Junction 8. Anyone of you out there went to see him?

And then he really did Japan, where he would stay for the next 5 years. I didn't keep track on his career there but reading the various reports, I believe he did well. Nowadays, almost every Korean artistes go to Japan for promotional activities. But back then, he was probably onee of the first few Korean artistes to do so. It must have been tough as he didn't speak Japanese. And in some of the interviews, he admitted that those were difficult years. But he pulled through.

In 2008, news broke that he would star in the all stellar cast drama, 'On Air' with Lee Bum Soo, Kim Ha Neul and Son Yoon Ah. I didn't place much expectation on it. But he would proved me wrong because he was absolutely brilliant in the show. Now only that, he looked great too. I read that he had actually taken up acting lessons before taking on the role as he felt he needed to brush up on his skills after having been away for 5 years. Needles to say, the drama was a big success and it seemed he had never left the Korean entertainment scene. The kiss scene between him and Song Yoon Ah was probably one of the most anticipated scene in the drama.

Park Yong Ha also sang 2 songs in the drama, but I like this one, Bad Love.

He soon followed with another great drama, 'Story of a Man' or 'Slingshot' with Kim Kang Woo and Park Si Yeon. Here's an interview the cast did for Arirang TV. I read that Park Si Yeon (now filming 'Çoffee House', who had only just spoken to him the day before he died was in total shock when she heard about it.

Anyway, I had a new found respect for this man.

Just a couple of weeks ago, I discovered his twitter account. There weren't too many followers, about 1,000+ and he wasn't following too many people either- 4 people to be exact. I just looked again just. Seems he's gained about 1,000 followers after his death. This is his account- Park Yong Ha's twitter account. His last entry was on 26th June...about the Korean football team I believe.

A picture posted by him on his twitter on 24th April 2010 with the posting 'One photo'.

He did an ad for Lotte DFS recently together with a whole host of Korean stars like Rain, Kang Ji Hwan, Song Seung Hun and Big Bang.

Lotte Duty Free ad

And he was also in a sort of ad for Korea Tourism Organisation promoting Mount Jiri in Dulregil. Maybe he should have followed the information in the ad and taken the slow life....

Here are some other clips if you are interested to look.

The Scam MV One of the movies that he did. He also sang the theme song.

'Loving you'- You Are in My Heart mv

'Story of a Man' or 'Slingshot' BTS

He also did an mv with Park Si Yeon for Park Hyo Shin's (one of my fav singer) album, The Gift- Part 1. They went all the way to Switzerland! Here are the mvs:

Park Hyo Shin -Gift pt 1
Park Hyo Shin -Gift pt 2

An interview with J.Mielo (I think it's a Japanese programme but it's conducted in English).

One of his latest and probably last concert held in Seoul- Park Yong Ha Live in Seoul, Candy Man

And last but not least, my favourite. Park Yong Ha and Song Seung Hun in the mv for Yeon Ga 2008 sang by SG Wannabe, my favourite group.

I mourn the loss of a talented artiste and my sympathy goes out to his family, especially his parents.

R.I.P. Park Yong Ha

Related post:

The Classic- Winter Sonata/ Winter Love Story


tiffany said...

This was from my friend, SN. I'll just post here what she told me via msn. Anyone else who went to the event and anyone took photos?

ya...i was there at bishan j8 for the event...
i still rem tat previous nite went for the z-pop waited till yongha came out n sang ard 11+pm...
then rush home sleep, next day morn i early early 10+am rch bishan j8 and Q under sun for event at 4pm!!
so SHOCK hear he suicide!!!
HE's my 1st K-star!!!

Anonymous said...

I was there at J8 too. Was one of the 1st few who got his autograph and I was also the lucky few who got to have a group photo taken with him. He was really sweet and nice. He's also the first K-star I liked. Totally heart-broken now T______________T

Anonymous said...

I was totally shock when i first rec'd this news from a close friend overseas while i was driving. First thing that come in mind was.. quickly get to office to login my computer to check on details. It's so sad that such a guy who have a promising career path would ended up his life like that. Now, it is even more painful for his parents to endure such happenings.
He reminds me about Leslie who also drove fan's in a shock on April Fool Day.

Park Yong Ha, may you rest in peace and pray that the family will be strong to overcome things in such a difficult time.

tks Tiffany for putting up so much details on Park Yong Ha and allow me to go thru all his work once again.


KCBlueSG said...

Hi Tiffany,

Thanks for the information. I liked him since winter sonata days... he is the only one i like in that show.. i got one of his album from korea at that time ... but i din follow his news (also cos of his disappearance to Japan market) .. the last drama i watced of him was "On Air". and he also went to CNBlue's first show case ... I am really sad to know of his death .. I din know that he came to singapore (which is when?) .. my failed ..

masterplan07 said...

i was at J8 to see him, my friends and I were 2nd in line. me n a friend did a heart for him and his smile ^^.... i liked him frm Winter Sonata, i cldn't stand BYJ at all so we're like the total opps. i was so shocked to see my friend's tweet abt his suicide. cldn't wait to get to office to verify e news. RIP sweet guy

tiffany said...

Thanks for leaving your comments here about your memories of Park Yong Ha. I think his death really shocked many people.

Razzor TV has put up some great clips of him when he was in Singapore. Do check them out when you are free. It brought back a lot of memories for me too.

tiffany said...


Park Yong Ha came in 2003 for Zhao Bao's 1st Z Pop concert.

Christina Smythe said...

His death was very heartbreaking. I hope his mother is faring well. My prayers go out to Park Yong Ha. Someone should create a memorial page for him on Evertalk within Facebook where we can pay our respects to him.

jacklyn johnson said...

I used to be a big fan and was very sad to hear about his death 2 years ago. I miss Park Yong Ha. Thanks for the heads up on the Evertalk page Christina.